Joe Cullen has ‘never felt as deflated’ after losing a PDC World Darts Championship classic to Michael van Gerwen on Tuesday night.
The Rockstar looked set to cause a huge upset against the world number one, leading 3-1 in the best of seven contest, but MVG roared back and won 4-3, with Cullen missing two match darts along the way.
The match went all the way to a deciding leg and the Yorkshireman had the throw at the crucial point, but his form deserted him and the Dutchman opened with a 180, helping him get over the line.
Cullen hit an incredible 19 180s in the match, equalling the record for a best of seven game, but it was not enough to oust the three-time world champion, as his two match darts at bullseye cost him.
The 31-year-old was incredibly close to the biggest win of his career and was clearly upset after the loss, but he sent a classy message to Van Gerwen in the aftermath.
‘Not really sure what to feel after that,’ Cullen tweeted. ‘Never been as gutted to lose a game of darts in my life!
‘I’m sure I’ll find some positives over the next week or 2 but atm I’ve never felt as deflated.
‘Of course I wish him all the best because he’s a phenomenal guy and also a phenomenal talented player. I’m so glad I won this one.’
Van Gerwen finished the match with an average of 100.43, his lowest of the tournament so far, but still a sensational display, which was required to keep up with Cullen.
MVG will face either Dave Chisnall or Dimitri van den Bergh in the quarter-finals in north London, with Chizzy and the Matchplay champion playing on Wednesday.
Also progressing to the quarter-finals on Tuesday night was Krzysztof Ratajski, who won another thriller against Gabriel Clemens in a deciding leg.
Both men found themselves on double one in the decider as both spurned chances for the win before the Polish Eagle hit the winner.
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